The latest boardroom-folio case for one of Apple’s tablets is iLuv’s CEO Folio for iPad mini ($65, aka iCA8J345). Made of faux black leather, the zip-shut folio looks very much like the company’s Chairman Folio for iPad, both inside and out. The most noticeable difference between the two is that the larger model houses a Bluetooth keyboard, while this one does not. This, combined with the less expensive material and smaller size, allows for a significantly more affordable option. The iPad mini’s body also lends itself particularly well to agenda-style cases; it feels very natural.
Although it’s faux leather, CEO Folio is high quality and could pass for being made of the real stuff. The front and back are plain save for the iLuv logo and an iSight camera hole, respectively. There’s also a kickstand on the back; it snaps against the case when not in use, and can be used for landscape viewing. Just like with the larger Chairman Folio, a zipper runs along the top, left, and bottom edges of the case, and there’s a single zipper pull.
Inside, the iPad mini fits into a holder attached to the back cover, with three credit card pockets and a plastic-windowed ID pocket on the opposite side. There’s also a vertical pocket that can hold a small pad of paper, and a stylus holder nestled in between the two covers.
As with many agenda-style cases, the biggest problem with CEO Folio is accessing the buttons and side switch along the edge. This is because of the border around the top and right side, which is just a little too close to the iPad’s body. You can get to the Sleep/Wake and volume buttons, it’s just a little less easy than if the walls weren’t blocking your way. The same is true for the side switch. There’s less of an issue with connecting to the headphone port, and because the Lightning port isn’t used so frequently, we don’t find it to be as onerous. Other than that, the only real issue is that the left and right edges of the frame are just a bit too wide, covering the screen a little bit.
It’s not a totally original concept, but we like what iLuv put out with CEO Folio. Again, we think this style complements the iPad mini particularly well, and could see the setup being particularly popular in offices. The fact that iLuv chose to use faux leather instead of real leather is acceptable because of its quality, and the pockets are a nice addition. We’d only like to see some tailoring to make getting to the ports and buttons a little easier. Overall, this is a good case, and it’s worthy of our general recommendation.
Company and Price
Company: iLuv (a unit of jWIN)
Compatible: iPad mini